Mountain Trip lead guide Brian Muller (once again) called in with the update on the May 27 West Buttress Expedition, who has reached 14,200′ (also known as 14-Camp) on Denali.
They join two other Mountain Trip teams who have already spent a couple of days up high. For reference, 14-Camp is higher than the tops of the majority of the mountains in the lower 48–save for a handful in Colorado and California.
The team ascended 3,000 vertical feat from their Camp Two at 11,200′, certainly no easy task when carrying heavy packs full of food and gear. The Park Service Climbing Rangers mandate that teams headed for the summit of Denali take an additional rest day at 14,200′ to allow their bodies some time to aclimate to the thinner air and high elevation before continuing up the route.
Today, June 3, the team will either bury their final cache below High Camp, or take a rest day to enjoy the spectacular scenery at 14-Camp and allow their bodies and spirits to recover for the steep, strenuous and committing sections of the route ahead.
Hopefully we’ll hear an audio updates from a few other members of the team soon!